Lord, fill my heart with Your loving gifts this season.
May love, joy mercy and grace flow from me!
Help me to have a pure and focused heart;
a heart that rejoices and dwells in Your presence!

Focus of the month: Christmas Carols

“Joy to the world the Lord has come; Let earth receive her King
Let every heart prepare Him room…”

The Joy of Christmas fills us with expectation that something meaningful is about to happen. With each New Year or stage of life, we experience Christmas a little differently. Young children wait eagerly for Christmas morning to arrive. The tree is lit, gifts are exchanged, and many celebrate the birth of Jesus. Our feeling of Christmas may evolve as we get older or experience challenging circumstances. We aren’t as innocent as we once were and our focus on the brightly lit tree and the gifts beneath it begins to shift. Cherished memories of Christmas’s past may flood our minds and hearts and instead of Joy we can feel pressure, sadness, or loneliness.

How do we overcome the hard parts or thoroughly enjoy the best of this holiday season? How do we free our hearts to be full of Joy? I believe this beautiful carol, “Joy to the World”, says it best — our answer is Jesus Christ!

“Let every heart prepare Him room”…Is your heart prepared?

 Let us anticipate; let us be ready to receive the one true gift of Christmas, Jesus. Years pass quickly; gifts are purchased and wear out, family dynamics change, but one thing remains – His unfailing love for us. Could this Christmas be the year you are truly basking in the glorious wonder of Him? Will we allow our pain; our suffering or our distractions here on this earth to take away the Joy that is found in our Savior? It can be hard to fight our feelings, this is true; but if we take time to revel in the birth and life of Jesus we can begin to feel His grace, His mercy, His protection and His comfort. He truly is the way to a Joyous Christmas.

As you make your plans on how to spend these next couple of weeks, my hope is that you will allow His Word to wash over you. That you will cling to Him and remember all He has done for you. Our hearts are the dwelling place of the Lord. Let us examine our hearts. Forgive those who have hurt us, love others the way God loves, offer help to those in need, and treat ourselves to time in His presence.

I finally know the reason that Heaven and Nature sing…because of JESUS!

Holding Fast to Hope,
Jen

Song Reference: “Joy to the World”: The words are by English hymn writer Isaac Watts and was published in 1719. This song is based on Psalm 98, 96:11-12 and Genesis 3:17-18.